The province is facing a shortage of tinned cream, which grocers are blaming on international trade restrictions.

For the last three months, stores across the island have had empty shelves where the thick cream usually sits.

"It's a daily thing. Three, four, five people everyday ask for cream," said Bernadette Barry, a floor clerk at Bidgood's in Goulds.

Judy Whitten of Fat Nanny's Groceries in St. John's said even when she gets a few cans in, word spreads, and they're scooped up in no time.

Neil Hamilton is upset that he can't find tinned cream

Shopper Neil Hamilton said tinned cream is something that Newfoundlanders have grown up with. (CBC)

"They're beating down my door! They're coming in, 'Oh my god, my grandmother wants it, my mother wants it,'" she said. "Once it's gone, it's gone."

Shoppers are discovering that the canned cream supply is drying up – and are going to great lengths to get their hands on a tin.

Neil Hamilton travelled over an hour, from St. John's to Placentia, to get his fix.

"As Newfoundlanders, tinned cream or canned cream was something that we grew up with," said Hamilton.

Carnation and Fussell's, the two most common labels, are now manufactured in the United States, and like all imported dairy products, they are subject to international trade quotas.

Morley Goodyear, the manager of the Co-op store in Clarenville, said the rules hit the East Coast particularly hard, where demand for canned cream is the greatest.

"Co-op Atlantic is allowed... or permitted to buy approximately 140 cases for the full year, and that's it. I tried to order 150 cases for this store, and 150 for Gander. And they said 'No, no, you're not going to get it,'" he said.